Tuesday, June 23, 2015


Day one: What the heck is this red rash on my left hip? Laid awake half the night wondering what it could be.  Cancer? Spider Bites? Allergic reaction to something? Impetigo? (No that’s around the mouth), Herpes? (Did I get an STD from that camp bathroom?  If I did, what will I tell DH?--I know, I know--doesn't happen but, anxiety rules my brain at 2 a.m. )

Day two: This rash HURTS and it’s getting worse.  Drop everything and go see a doc.
“Doc, I’ve got this rash on my hip.  I think it’s a heat rash.  I’ve been working outside a lot in the sun and getting all sweaty and stuff.”

Doc gives me a paper dress, comes back with a young nurse and looks at my rash. His face tells me it is bad news.  “I’m sorry but you have a classic case of Shingles.”

Doc gave me the speech you can find anywhere on the internet, called in some meds to my pharmacy and sent me on my way.

I let my hubby know the awful news.  He came right home but about all he could do was feel sorry for me.  Then the pain and then horrible nausea started.  I’d told my doc I had horrific reaction to Lortab so he prescribed Tramadol for pain.  Turns out that stuff is also full of codeine and by the time I figured it out and quit taking it I’d barfed up my socks so many times I ended up in the ER getting rehydrated.

Long story short.  My left rear looks like I was caught stealing chickens and got hit with buckshot by the farmer.  It stings like I slid down a cheese grater into alcohol.  Okay, TMI.  Sorry.

 But I’m not quite dead.  I’m getting better.  I don’t want to go in the cart so I’m taking the pills that are supposed to kill the virus even though they’re the size of giant jelly beans. (The pills, not the virus.)

The rash is quite awesome as rashes go and has stopped spreading and oozing.  Oh, yeah, TMI.  Sorry.   

No, not dead yet. I think I’ll go for a walk.   I feel happy.  I feel happy. Take away the cart.

And if you’re over 60 run, don’t walk to a place that gives immunizations against Shingles.  The shot is expensive but Medicare and insurance should cover the cost.

Monday, June 22, 2015


This is one of our neighbors at camp, a red-napped sapsucker.

This is the end result of "The Ray of Death."

This is a red-napped sapsucker suffering the effects of The Ray of Death.  
This behavior is also known as "sunning" but it's not as funny.